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CL previews upcoming concerts (July 29-Aug.4) 

WEDNESDAY, JULY 29

Pterodactyl These four sound-alchemists are based in Brooklyn, N.Y., and their latest, Worldwild, certainly fits today's multi-culti big-city sonic bill: polyrhythmic beat-fucking, rabid full-band chanting and cross-harmonizing, guitar FX detonations, epileptic arrangements and tempos, and plenty of laptop mischief – just to highlight the most tell-tale signs. How do they differ from the Battles and Animal Collectives living right down the street? By the slimmest of degrees. With Bo White & Guests and Bob Fields. Snug Harbor (John Schacht)

THURSDAY, JULY 30

Torche Here's a double bill to get your innards good and rattled. These rockers twist metal, psychedelic wigouts, sludgy guitars and rumbling bass to unleash their, well, innard-rattling bombast. When touring with their buds and fellow Georgia rockers the legendary Harvey Milk, the night will be rife with chunks of guitar riffs, pounding percussion and ear drums buzzing for days. Co-headlining with the aforementioned Harvey Milk. Milestone (Samir Shukla)

FRIDAY, JULY 31

Actual Proof CD Release Who knew the vibraphone could be so intriguing? The Charlotte-based progressive fusion quartet's jazz doesn't slack up on subtle funk, either. Vibraphonist and Queens University professor Eric Mullis and company swirl spacey fusion interwoven with improvisation that sounds so effortless because each member is obviously a master of his instrument and can run solo sections and then jump right back into the mix without missing a note. They are celebrating the release of their debut CD where sound exploration is the modus operandi. With Jonathan Scales Fourchestra. Double Door Inn (Samir Shukla)

I Was Totally Destroying It This Chapel Hill outfit's name may give you the wrong impression of its music. This power synth pop/rock quintet with a hardcore name sounds more like Paramore than Every Time I Die, but they still totally destroy your perception of prior pop/rock efforts. Super-charged yet soft-hearted, this one-girl-multiple-guy dynamic seems to work yet again. With The Sammies, The Groves and You Tonight. Visulite Theatre (Sam Webster)

Sam Bush Sam sure can play the man-do-lin, but man, do these bluegrass guys stretch themselves thin or what? The man's played with New Grass Revival, Bela Fleck and Emmylou Harris, to name but a few, but his most satisfying work to these ears is with his own Sam Bush Band, a sort of New-New Grass Revival (Bush's now legendary first supergroup, who more or less, like with Bill Monroe and bluegrass, defined a genre). Sam always shows up to a session ready to pick, however, and tonight's show ought not to be any different, no matter who's taggin' along. Neighborhood Theatre (Timothy C. Davis)

SATURDAY, AUG. 1

Idols Live! It was so fitting, last year, when the sponsor of the American Idol tour was Pop Tarts. Oh well ... Last season's top 10 are out on tour to sing their greatest karaoke hits with a live band. It's amazing that a "cover band" can pack "The Cable Box" downtown, but there's no accounting for bad taste. Rumor has it Kris Allen no longer has to sing his wretched first single, and everyone's favorite screecher Adam Lambert will have the guyliner caked on extra thick so it can be seen from the upper deck. I'd suggest bringing wine to go with all the cheese. Time Warner Cable Arena (Jeff Hahne)

SUNDAY, AUG. 2

The Crystal Method The L.A.-based electronic duo is touring the circuit supporting their new release Divided by Night. A stellar cast of guests lend a hand on the record including Peter Hook (New Order), Matisyahu and Justin Warfield. Twisting the knobs with massive beats stroked by a moody undertow, the Crystal Method makes the live gigs as intriguing as their studio-prepared recordings. Amos' Southend (Shukla)

Fireworks If you're looking to score some Ritalin, don't ask these guys. This Michigan power-punk band needs it worse than you. With three-chord progressions that just won't stop and the perfect pace to fit right in on Warped Tour, Fireworks have an energy reminiscent to old New Found Glory. Their sing-along songs and crowd-inclusive chants make for a fun live experience, but maybe more for the lost 15-year-old inside of you. With Four Year Stong, Set Your Goals, Polar Bear Club and Drive A. Visulite Theatre (Webster)

TUESDAY, AUG. 4

Cracker David Lowery's recorded output with his post-Camper Van Beethoven outfit has suffered in the comparison, but then bars don't get set much higher than Key Lime Pie. Cracker's 10th and latest, Sunrise In The Land Of Milk And Honey, is a middle-of-the-pack effort, though Lowery, always an astute culture observer, still has a sharp tongue and lyrical eye. Here, he turns it on eco-survivalists, the teetering nuclear state of Pakistan, the fading promise of the American dream, shell-shocked Iraq War vets, questionable companions and the '80s American punk scene. John Doe, Mark Linkous and Patterson Hood guest on an album of wistful pot-baked country, '70s-riff rock and high-BPM punk. Lowery, by the way, recently did a stint as Guest Editor at Magnet, where he praised The Foot Fist Way soundtrack composed by local rockers Pyramid and called "Dog Wild Heaven" one of the "best less-than-two-minutes songs ever." That's gotta count for something. Visulite Theatre (Schacht)

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  • On Saturday, Oct. 21, hundreds gathered at Camp North End on Statesville Avenue for Charlotte's first black alternative music festival. We captured some of the bands in action on stage, but mostly we surveyed the grounds as fans, families, vendors and more lounged around the sprawling, colorful Camp North End site. It was a great day of music, food, fun, and sweet, autumn sunshine. (Photos by Mark Kemp)
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